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  • Another Hello From Texas

    I've been around a few days but just saw this thread.

    Howdy!

    I had an 8.4kW system installed on my home about 2 months ago. I have 16-300w panels on the southern exposure of the roof and 12-300w on the west facing roof. They are feeding a grid-tied SolarEdge 7600 inverter. I am interested in wringing as much as technically possible out of them.

    While I am generally happy with the system I want to eventually get into the experimental stage. I had to have them installed and permitted for the city and fed credits but I think I can start to tinker now. Perhaps, eventually moving the western panels to some type of tracking system.

    I was in construction and construction management before getting into IT about 20 years ago. The overall electrical aspect is not really an issue for me (hey, I know ohms law )but some of the panel and inverter tech is definitely new to me. While I'm familiar with RS-485, I also hope to learn more about the modbus specs and how to monitor the SE from a system other than the SE cloud.

  • #2
    Welcome! Thanks for your comments in the thread seeking new moderators as well. The forum may not be perfect, but a lot of people have gotten a lot of good from the information exchanged here, and I hope that you find your time spent reading and posting to be rewarding.

    The SolarEdge stuff is challenging (I own two systems using their inverters). Even if you figure out the Modbus stuff, you only have access to a subset of information (inverter only)... not the optimizer level data. There is material out in the world on how to intercept and interpret communication between the inverter and the portal, and there are also ways to redirect that traffic if you want to forgo the portal completely.

    I chose to install a 3rd party revenue grade meter on my inverter output to take control over the data collection and have a script running to read it and send it to PVOutput.org, which is good enough for me for now.


    CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

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    • #3
      Thanks sensij.

      Does the RGM provide the optimizer data as well? Who makes it? I was wondering about the PVout links and how that works with SolarEdge.

      Yeah, I have seen some github apps to intercept the data from the inverter. From what I can tell, those homebrew solutions are still at the mercy of SolarEdge. SE changes something in firmware and we have to start all over again. I don't know what SE has to gain by all this secrecy with OUR data. A simple webserver at the inverter is not rocket surgery.

      I bumped into another cloud type issue a few days ago. I have a Samsung SmartThings hub with Alexa (that whole bit). My internet went down and it all came crashing down. I knew about Alexa and voice processing by the Amazon mothership but it turns out all the SmartThings shtuff is handled through the cloud. Even the phone app quit working. I hate this cloud crap!

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      • #4
        No, I don't get optimizer data. SE's unwillingness to allow local access is really frustrating to me too. I really wanted to go with another system for the one I installed this spring, but still decided that the trade-off for better data (while the cloud is functioning) is worth the risk that I'll lose access to it someday. Even stuff like irrigation controllers... Rachio is cloud based, Rain Machine allows local access, the decision was easy for me.

        PVOutput only has access to data available through SolarEdge's API, which is though the cloud server. Optimizer data isn't even available by that method either, the SolarEdge portal is the only place you can see it unless you homebrew something.
        CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

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        • #5
          I have seen the Rachio controllers by name but never explored them. Wow, two clouds counting SmartThings. I think that is asking for trouble. I will probably homebrew something there when I get around to it.

          I need to get an API key for my SE. So far, the installer has stone walled me there. I read somewhere that SE doesn't want those released anymore. Have you heard anything specific?

          While it may be a bit too much of a tangent, have you all considered having a home automation section here? Given some ppl have TOU metering and the like I could see where home automation could be helpful. We don't have any TOU or any different rates here but if there were a decent interface to the inverter, I could use the data from the SE for different things. Like referencing the system output as a sunrise/sunset photocell for security lighting. Just a thought.

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          • #6
            So, thanks to inspron 's ill-fated thread on how to AC couple to Solaredge, I took another pass through their communication documentation. Somewhere along the way, they released guidelines for how to communicate via Modbus TCP, through the ethernet port. It doesn't get optimizer data, but definitely goes onto my to-do list for playing around to see how that local data stream compares to what is available through the portal (and the API into the portal).
            CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

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            • #7
              There is a guy on GitHub that has pretty much broken the code for the SE messages. From my understanding he is able to get near real time data from the SE which includes data from the optimizers. I haven't tried it yet as he is specifically using the RS485 modbus. I would need to run a cable from the SE to whatever system I will use as a logger and I don't want to set up shop outside to experiment.

              He goes into quite a bit of detail about it about 1/3 of the way down the page with some data dumps.
              https://github.com/jbuehl/solaredge/issues/8

              Maybe this will help.

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